Friday, August 31, 2007


What is the problem with the human race? What is it we have all done wrong?

Not all have murdered or committed adultery or stolen. But Isaiah 53:6 says "All we like sheep have gone astray; We have turned, everyone, to his own way." God calls this tendency to choose our own way rather than his "iniquity." Today we would probably call it rebellion. Derek Prince in his book Atonement sums it up this way: "The root problem of humanity is rebellion against God."


We see in this verse not only the problem but the solution. God laid on Jesus the iniquity of us all on the cross. But what does this mean to you and me us as we live out our lives in today's culture?

The Hebrew word for iniquity is avon. This word means not only rebellion but all the evil consequences of rebellion. It is a comprehensive word including the punishment that falls on those who disobey God's law. This same word is used in Genesis 4:13, 1 Samuel 28:10, Lamentations 4:6 & 22. In each of these instances the Hebrew word avon is interpreted as punishment.


Derek Prince in Atonement lets scripture interpret scripture and comes to this conclusion: the Hebrew word avon means rebellion, the punishment for rebellion, and the evil consequences of rebellion. In Genesis 4:13 we see that Cain's iniquity and its punishment were both included in the one word: avon. 1 Samuel 28:10 shows Saul using avon to assure the witch that she would not be held guilty, nor would she be punished. Lamentations 4:6 uses avon to mean punishment or punishment of the iniquity. Lamentations 4:22 also uses the word avon to mean the punishment of the iniquity.


He further concludes that a divine exchange took place on the cross that unlocks all the treasures of God's provision: "All the evil due by justice to come to us came on Jesus, so that all the good due to Jesus, earned by His sinless obedience, might be made available to us." A future post will name the nine specific exchanges that took place on the cross and give scripture references for each.

Photo by DetroitDerek

Tuesday, August 21, 2007


The deeds of God reveal God's ability;
His ways reveal His intentions.

That's my "thought for the day" from Eddie Smith's Insight newsletter.

I'm posting from the San Fernando Valley outside Los Angeles rather than my beloved Hill Country of Texas. There are some things that are similar. For instance, it gets hot during the day here and cools off at night just like at home. I walk every morning while it is cool and enjoy the lush vegetation. I see lovely things growing large in the yards here that I usually see only as pot plants elsewhere. There's not as much animal life here, of course, since this is a very urban area, but there was a squirrel chiding me from a tree this morning for invading his territory and I met a nice dog named Molly who shared the sidewalk with me.

May God bless your day!

Friday, August 10, 2007

Why Did Jesus Come?

Jesus with little one
Originally uploaded by freestone
Over the years I have made a list of scriptural answers to this question. Here's one from Hebrews 2:14: to identify with the flesh and blood children and through his death destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil.

Now I'm asking you to name a verse that tells why Jesus came to earth. Please include the scripture reference; however, photos aren't required :)

Thursday, August 02, 2007

ATONEMENT: God's Extravagant Provision, Part 2


Atonement: Your Appointment With God,
by Derek Prince has as its theme the work of Calvary as God's extravagant provision for all our needs. In Chapter one we learn that the word atonement refers to God and the sinner being reconciled to each other through the cross. That is, God and the sinner are brought into a relationship in which they are at one, or at-one-ment.

At this point Derek writes about the Bible diagnosis of sin as the problem of mankind. And states that the Bible remedy for sin is atonement.


Old Testament Sacrifices Temporarily Covered Sin

Derek then explains the difference between the Hebrew word kippur translated atonement in the Old Testament and the Greek word translated atonement in the New Testament. Kippur actually means covering. The sacrifices offered on the Day of Atonement covered the sins of the people for one year, and only for one year. Instead of providing a permanent solution for sins, they were merely temporarily covered until the Day of Atonement arrived again each year.

New Testament Sacrifice Takes Away Sin

The New Testament gives a completely different picture. Hebrews 10:3-4 tells us that the blood of bulls and goats as sacrifices in the Old Testament could not take away sins. Hebrews 9:26 contrasts the death of Jesus and the Old Testament sacrifices by saying, "But now, once at the end of the ages, He has appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself." In John 1:29 John the Baptist introduced Jesus as, "The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!"

So we see the huge difference between what atonement meant in the Old Testament and what it meant in the new. Old Testament sacrifices rather than taking away sin actually reminded the people of the problem of sin. Sins were merely covered from one year to the next. Jesus took away sin so that for New Testament believers who have accepted his sacrifice, there remains no further sacrifice for sins.

We Are Perfected Forever

A key scripture in this book is Hebrews 10:14: "By one offering He has perfected forever those who are being sanctified." Hebrews 9:13-14 tells us that Christ was without blemish as he offered himself through the eternal Spirit. Unlike the animal sacrifices, he was totally pure. And the involvement of the eternal Spirit indicates that his substitutionary death on the cross transcends the limits of time. The inference here is that He took on Himself the sins of all people past, present and future.


There is much good advice given in Christian circles and in the Bible itself, but the cross is the only source of absolute forgiveness, grace and power to make all the other good advice work. As Derek writes, "No one will ever live out the Sermon on the Mount without the power of the cross in his or her life."

Next time we will look at what Derek calls the "Divine Exchanges."